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Metro

IBP hits De Lima on Binay suspension

Edu Punay - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines - The head of the Integrated Bar of the Philippines (IBP) is puzzled by Justice Secretary Leila de Lima’s stance against the Court of Appeals (CA) order stopping the preventive suspension of Makati Mayor Jejomar Erwin Binay Jr.

Vicente Joyas, national president of the IBP, said he could not understand why she would publicly assail the CA for granting relief to Binay.

“The case is pending in the court. As a lawyer, she should just leave the case with the court,” he told The STAR by phone yesterday.

Joyas also rebutted the pronouncement made by De Lima that the CA has no power to stop the order of the Office of the Ombudsman.

But the IBP head said this is not true.

“The CA can issue TRO on preventive suspension (by the Ombudsman). What the CA can’t stop is a decision of the Ombudsman because only the Supreme Court can do that,” Joyas explained.

“In this case, the TRO on preventive suspension would not delay the investigation of the Ombudsman. It simply stops the suspension, but not the investigation,” he added.

Legal opinion ‘not binding’

Meanwhile, De Lima admitted yesterday that her legal opinion on the TRO was “not binding.”

She issued the clarification amid allegations that her opinion was unconstitutional.

“How can the act of rendering an opinion be unconstitutional? It does not purport to adjudicate or bind any one. It is an opinion. It is advisory in nature,” she said.  

In her legal opinion, De Lima said the TRO was “moot and academic” since the act it intended to restrain was the implementation of the six-month suspension order against the mayor, which was carried out by the Department of the Interior and Local Government three hours before the CA issued the order.

Ombudsman Conchita Carpio-Morales shared this opinion, which was used by Interior Secretary Manuel Roxas II in defying the TRO.

The three officials are facing a contempt charge before the CA, which ordered them to explain their defiance of the TRO.

 

COURT OF APPEALS

DE LIMA

INTEGRATED BAR OF THE PHILIPPINES

INTERIOR SECRETARY MANUEL ROXAS

JOYAS

JUSTICE SECRETARY LEILA

MAKATI MAYOR JEJOMAR ERWIN BINAY JR.

OFFICE OF THE OMBUDSMAN

OMBUDSMAN CONCHITA CARPIO-MORALES

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